Advice on getting involved in touring
touring is something you can do entirely independently. You
don't need to be a member of a club or any other organisation,
and you don't need to follow anyone's rules - except the rules
of the road, of course. Go where you want, when you want,
at the speed you want, with whom you want.
Nevertheless, there are bodies out there that can help you
get the most out of your touring. The biggest and best known
is the Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC). Check out the CTC
website for information and advice on routes, equipment,
insurance and just about anything else you can think of. The
CTC provides some excellent services, and acts as a campaign
organisation on behalf of the wider cycling community. However,
membership is relatively pricy (more than joining the Beacon,
for instance), partly because it includes third-party insurance.
The CTC also has 'divisions': local groups of CTC members
who get together for rides, which are typically fairly leisurely.
Contact details can be found on the CTC website. Other organisations
active in this field are the Tandem
Club and Audax
There is no conflict between membership of the Beacon and
membership of another organisation such as the CTC. In fact,
the club encourages people to make sure they have proper insurance,
such as that provided by the CTC. Lots of Beacon members are
also members of these other bodies.
Informal touring advice is always available from experienced
Beacon members, some of whom have toured extensively - one
has actually cycled around the world! Get in touch via the
or by chatting on club runs and at Thursday
night social gatherings.